Gifts presented to PM Modi on display, to be e-auctioned

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New Delhi, Oct 23 (IANS) A collection of gifts and memorabilia, presented to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, including his painted and wood-carved depictions, is on exhibition from Tuesday, and will be e-auctioned soon, at the National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) here.

Reflecting the diverse cultural fabric of the nation, the exhibits include ‘pagadis’ (turbans), ‘angavastrams’, traditional jackets, canvases, prints and photographs on historical and political figures, and an array of sculptural media crafted from metal, stone and wood.

The gifts, received since he assumed office in May 2014, also reflect a vast geographic diversity. Along with those received during overseas tours, there are presents from almost all Indian states.

Some of the noteworthy painted portraits on view include one in which Modi is seen walking on an Indian Railways platform along with other passengers.

Another one paints a smiling Modi offering water to a ‘shivaling’ (an ithyphallic icon of Hindu god Shiva). Two more gifted paintings show him meditating, and with Mahatma Gandhi, respectively.

Also on view are ‘Iktara Sitars’, flutes, ‘dholaks’, bows and arrows, ‘Gadas’, mementos and masks. One can also find prints and paintings of key Indian sanctums like Somnath Temple, Ajmer Sharif and Golden Temple.

Apart from those depicting Indian deities, works commemorating figures like Sardar Vallabhai Patel, Swami Vivekananda, and Narayana Guru; and events like the 100th anniversary of the Komagata Maru incident also find space in the exhibition.

The show, curated by the NGMA, has been supplied with the collection by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and his residence, an NGMA spokesperson told IANS, adding that the collectibles will be up for grabs in an e-auction, dates for which haven’t been finalised.

As per the curatorial team, the auction proceeds will go to charity, however the specific cause and donees are yet to be decided.

The base price for each of the nearly 2,000 gifts on rotational view in the exhibition space has been fixed by the PMO. Starting from Rs 500, the prices run up to a few thousands.

The exhibition is open for viewing till October 31.



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